A man who recently moved to an apartment only blocks from the West Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Medical Center was arrested Friday on a federal stalking charge that alleges a longtime harassment campaign targeting two female doctors at the hospital, as well as three other victims who work at the VA’s Loma Linda facility.
Gueorgui Hristov Pantchev, 49, of West Los Angeles, was arrested without incident by FBI special agents. Pantchev is expected to make his initial appearance Friday afternoon in U.S. District Court in downtown Los Angeles.
Pantchev was charged in a criminal complaint that details his conduct that began in 2011 with numerous threatening communications sent to two West L.A. VA doctors.
Pantchev was charged by the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office and convicted in 2014 of nine counts of stalking and witness intimidation involving the two doctors. After serving a state prison sentence, Pantchev was paroled in 2017 and barred from the West L.A. VA Medical Center.
He then began seeking medical services at the VA’s Loma Linda facility, where he “started stalking, harassing and intimidating” three other employees, according to the affidavit in support of the complaint.
Notwithstanding the parole conditions that prohibited him from going to the West L.A. facility, Pantchev last year sought care there and allegedly began sending intimidating communications to colleagues of the initial two doctors, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Pantchev allegedly distributed “hundreds of lewd, sexually explicit and false fliers bearing large pictures” of the two doctors throughout West Los Angeles on multiple days, according to federal prosecutors.
The criminal complaint contains specific examples of communications sent to the victims, all of whom felt threatened and took actions to have no contact with him. VA Police officials took action to restrict Pantchev’s access to the two medical facilities by requiring him to have an escort when arriving for an appointment, according to prosecutors.
The affidavit notes that there are more than 40 police reports since 2018 that contain “detailed instances of him being loud, disruptive, rude and demanding” at the Loma Linda VA campus.
Pantchev began returning to the West L.A. campus last March, even though it was in direct violation of his parole, according to the complaint. After his parole ended in September, he visited the facility three times, one of which resulted in his arrest for trespassing and battery on a police officer for allegedly spitting in his face, prosecutors said.
If convicted of the stalking charge alleged in the complaint, Pantchev would face up to five years in federal prison.
Members of the public who have information about Pantchev’s activities or believe they may be victims were encouraged to contact the FBI at 310-477-6565.